Top 5 Stretches to Keep You Mov­ing

Golf Today Northwest - - Contents - By: DR. HARRY G. SESE, DC, BS, RMT, GOLF IN­JURY & PER­FOR­MANCE SPE­CIAL­IST Dr.sese is the Clin­i­cal Di­rec­tor at the Wash­ing­ton Golf Per­for­mance In­sti­tute in Belle­vue, WA.

“Dear The Golf­ing Doc. My back and hips tend to stiffen up af­ter holes es­pe­cially when it’s cold and rain­ing. Are there any good stretches I can do on the course? And is it bet­ter for me to walk or ride a cart? Thanks."

—Troy S., Seat­tle, WA

Iknow it’s been a tough start to the golf sea­son here in the Pa­cific North­west with all the rain. But now it’s time to step up the golf­ing. Be­fore you do that, ask your­self what kind of phys­i­cal shape you are in. This is to help re­duce your risk of hurt­ing your­self when you run out to the driv­ing range and hit a 1000 balls! Have you been work­ing out dur­ing the “off sea­son”? If your an­swer is yes, that’s fan­tas­tic. Get out there and start play­ing. If you have not been work­ing out, that’s not good, but that’s okay. It’s never too late to start. I would rec­om­mend start­ing with some ba­sic car­dio such as bik­ing or walk­ing. If you need a lit­tle mo­ti­va­tion, just re­mem­ber how many miles and steps you take to play a round of golf. The more golf you want to play, the bet­ter con­di­tioned your body must be to with­stand it. If you have been read­ing my past ar­ti­cles, you know that I rec­om­mend hav­ing a con­sis­tent golf-spe­cific con­di­tion­ing rou­tine. This should in­clude daily golf-spe­cific ex­er­cises to help tar­get your trou­ble spots such as tight ham­strings. It should also in­clude your stan­dard warm up and cool down rou­tine be­fore and af­ter you prac­tice or play. If you don’t have one, check out my wife’s blog which in­cludes a great li­brary of golf ex­er­cises ( www.shawn­farm­ers­ese.com). If you can com­mit more time dur­ing the week to your golf con­di­tion­ing, then in­clude a more in­tense work­out pro­gram that you can do a few times a week. No one said be­ing a golfer is easy. If you are a golfer, you are an ath­lete. When it comes to the ques­tion of, is it bet­ter to ride a cart or walk the course while play­ing golf? That will de­pend on your health in­clud­ing past and present in­juries or con­di­tions and your own per­sonal pref­er­ences. If you want to main­tain, im­prove, or chal­lenge your car­dio­vas­cu­lar con­di­tion­ing, then walk­ing is a great form of ex­er­cise. Car­ry­ing your bag or us­ing a pull cart for over 6 miles in over 4 hours is a great way to burn calo­ries and im­prove your en­durance. If the course is very hilly and su­per long since it weaves through

a bunch of houses, then rid­ing a cart may be a bet­ter op­tion. If you have an un­der­ly­ing is­sue such as a sig­nif­i­cantly arthritic hip that both­ers you af­ter walk­ing long dis­tances but doesn’t hurt while swing­ing, then a cart would be bet­ter for you. Some golfers feel bet­ter walk­ing as it keeps their body mov­ing and pre­vents it from get­ting stiff from shot to shot. One com­mon is­sue that you do share with a lot of golfers is the body stiff­en­ing up while play­ing. If this is the case, then def­i­nitely stretch dur­ing your round as fre­quently as needed. As the sum­mer ap­proaches and fair­ways and tee boxes dry up, why not take a few sec­onds to stretch. Throw a towel on the grass and stretch those tight spots. Here are the top 5 ex­er­cises from our GOLFLETICA Di­rec­tor of Golf Con­di­tion­ing, Shawn Farmer Sese you can do through­out your round to keep you mov­ing. Hold your stretches for 20 to 30 sec­onds and re­peat on each side as needed. If you feel any pain or ma­jor dis­com­fort while per­form­ing an ex­er­cise, stop im­me­di­ately and con­sult your physi­cian.

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